Evangelical Leaders Announce Landmark New Strategy for “Responsible & Balanced” Environmental Care
Washington, DC, May 2, 2007—Amid mounting controversies among some evangelical Christians over the actual causes of global warming and what constitutes responsible environmental policy, the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance announced today at the National Press Club an expanded program of outreach and education, as well as a new name for the organization to better reflect its principles and purpose.
Now known as the “Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation,” the more vigorous and newly streamlined organization will continue to bring a responsible and balanced Biblical view of the earth’s stewardship to critical issues of environment and economic development. Also, through the “Cornwall Stewardship Agenda,” now under development, the reconfigured coalition will work more aggressively with churches, educational institutions, and other entities worldwide to promote the important principles of the Cornwall Declaration on Environmental Stewardship.
That Declaration is an authoritative document put forward in 2000 that has been signed by approximately 1,500 clergy, theologians, religious leaders and other people of faith. It has come to be viewed as one of the most significant expressions of belief about religion and the environment in modern times. “The Cornwall Alliance is organized and built around the principles of the Cornwall Declaration, and the new name is designed to reflect that,” explained Dr. E. Calvin Beisner, associate professor of social ethics at Knox Theological Seminary, and the Alliance’s national spokesman. “The new name also brings in the very significant concept of the ‘stewardship of Creation’ which recognizes that God created this world with great wisdom and power, and has entrusted those made in His image, men and women, to exercise faithful stewardship over it,” he added.
Beisner is co-author of “A Call to Truth, Prudence and Protection of the Poor: An Evangelical Response to Global Warming.” That paper calls for climate policies that will better protect the world’s poor and promote economic development and has been endorsed by over 150 leaders drawn from the religious and scientific community. The paper presents evidence that mandatory carbon-emissions reductions to mitigate global warming would “not only fail to achieve that end but would also have the unintended consequence of serious harm to the world’s poor, delaying for decades or generations their rise from poverty and its attendant high rates of disease and premature death.”
The alliance also announced the formation of a Cornwall Stewardship Agenda task force designed to take the broad Biblical principles of the Cornwall Declaration and translate them into specific public-policy recommendations. The first two areas the task force will undertake are those of “poverty and development” and “climate and energy.” The task force will be cochaired by Dr. Stephen Livesay, president of Bryan College, and Dr. Barrett Duke, vice president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
For more information about the Cornwall Alliance visit its website at www.cornwallalliance.org.
Related:Evangelical Leaders Announce Landmark New Strategy for “Responsible & Balanced” Environmental Care (PDF)